Thursday, January 26, 2017

Sleep and other idols

Let's start with motherhood, shall we? Because it is my life. It is every waking minute of my day. It is what consumes my entire being, not just my physical body, but my emotions and mentality. Yesterday, Brian got home and we both laid on our bed and I told him about my day. I told him how I was exhausted mentally from parenting and disciplining rowdy toddlers who could just not. Get. Along.
We've been struggling with sleep lately and oddly enough, the 2 month old is not to blame. With the girls waking earlier and earlier (think Maddie running into our room at 4:45 am), I decided to implement a tip from several moms to keep the girls in bed until 7 am. Get a special clock, let them have books, tell them they need to stay in bed until 7. Sounds simple enough, right? Well, it wasn't.

After 2 weeks of it, this is what we had: me groggily stumbling from bed at 5 am, breaking up the fights, spending the next 2 hours refereeing and eventually being so frustrated and angry, I would let them out and the crankiness would just trickle through the rest of the day. I wasn't getting anything done except creating extra opportunities for my own anger to boil over. The rest of the day was spent with me constantly trying to control my anger and desperately failing.

Chloe has been sleeping 7-8 hour stretches the last few days so today I decided that instead of trying to keep the girls in their room and not at each other's throats, I would let them join me. I was able to sneak in a shower before they woke up at 6 and then they both came downstairs and read books quietly next to me while I read Jeremiah.

Now normally, I'm straining to keep my anger under control but today, I was able to correct and discipline without raising my voice or huffing and sighing with impatience seeping through every pore. It was exactly the kind of day I needed. Full of grace from the Lord. But it made me think.

I was so desperately trying to have my alone time (or to be honest, my sleep) which just wasn't working for us. Instead, the Lord showed me that my time with Him or whatever I'm doing will include little ones sitting at my feet or in my arms. This is my full time job. 24/7. No breaks. No vacations.

And isn't that part of my job as a mother? To show them that no matter the circumstances, I place a high priority on my relationship with God. Not a high priority on sleep or a clean house or being able to have "me" time.

I still think it's good to have time for myself, for my own sanity and even just to rejuvenate myself mentally and physically. But I don't think I'll look back on this 30 years from now and wish I had made more "me" time. I need just enough to be able to come back to creating a happy home for the people I love. I still have the dirty dishes and piles of clean laundry and bottoms to be wiped and babies to be fed. But there's joy knowing that this is the best thing I can do with my time and the most important job anyone could have. And I couldn't be more thankful that God has in His goodness entrusted me with these little ones.